tv U.S. House of Representatives CSPAN September 7, 2010 5:00pm-8:00pm EDT
>> president obama plans to talk about the economy tomorrow. he will travel to ohio to speak at a community college. we will have that live for you share on c-span. -- here on c-span. "book tv" continues tonight in prime time with joy hakim. "book tv" in prime-time tonight on c-span2. >> at long last the united sates of america joined every other industrial nation in the world
with 31% of the vote. this is about an hour. >> good evening and thank you for joining us for this first gubernatorial debate. >> tonight's debate is brought to you by impact nevada. this is a partnership between ' the las vegas review journal" and pbs. >> rory reid and brian sandoval have released plans for improving education. we will hear from both candidates on this issue. >> the venue for tonight's debate, the andre agassi college preparatory academy. here is a man who really cares about education, andre agassi. [applause]
>> thank you. good evening and welcome to the andre agassi college preparatory academy. i want to rory reid and brian sandoval for accepting this invitation to come here to share their thoughts on this vital issue, education. we built this school because we believe nothing has the power to change a child's life like a quality education. without an education a child cannot hope. without a quality system, a state cannot compete. the next governor will long be remembered for the effect on education. nevada is struggling economically. a huge portion of our state budget goes to education, the next governor will be called
upon to make serious decisions. they will be asked how much are we spending on education? are we spending a enough? what is being done to insure accountability? by the time we leave here tonight i hope we will have a clear idea how these men will answer those questions. one of the things that makes me proud this is our code of respect which our children recite before class. i ask our audience the the candidates to show the respect we demand of our kids so the dialogue can be constructive. best of luck to both candidates. [applause] >> thank you.
>> before we began we want to review the rules for tonight's debate. >> each candidate will get two minutes for an opening statement and two minutes at the end for a summary. >> we will have questions from the community. they will be asked alternately. they have two minutes to answer. they have one minute to respond. >> we may also ask follow-up questions for each candidate. aforetime limits will be strictly enforced -- our time limits will be strictly enforced. >> we ask the audience to hold all of false until the end of the debate. turn off your cell phones so we can hear closing remarks. >> rory reid will go first with
his opening statement. >> it's great to be here to talk about one of my favorite subjects, education. everyone is anxious or angry. your schools are failing your children. your governor has left this economy crashing. we need a strong leader to get us through this mess. brian sandoval is a weak leader. he says he is for education but his budget proposal would cut his -- would cut our schools. it would lead to an explosion of class size and his voucher proposal would take $100 billion to subsidize private education of a handful. i will not cut education. my budget proposal funds our
schools, and it makes sure you will have teachers. our schools are in crisis. we need a decisive leader to lead us through this. ryan is not strong on education. -- brian is not strong on education. my name is rory reid. i have been consistent and honest with everything i have done. i have balanced the $6 billion budget without ever raising your taxes. my prioritized spending to create jobs. i made the tough decisions when they needed to be made. consistency is what nevada needs. that is the kind of governor i will be for you. i want to thank kondracke agassi preparatory school for hosting this event -- i want to thank
kondracke agassi. >> -- andre agassi. >> i want to thank mr. agassi for sponsoring this event. my opponent and i agree that education is important. i grew up in this state's. i had an opportunity to serve in the nevada legislature and the chief gaining legislator. i served as a federal judge. i get asked all the time why would i give up a lifetime appointment? the answer is simple, i care deeply about this state. i had a unique opportunity to leave the security of that appointment to try to improve what we have. education is extremely
important. tomorrow morning i will take my daughter to first grade. it is a big day for her. our education system is in peril. we need to challenge the system. that is why i delivered a plan that will shake up the status quo. it calls for accountability, choice to give every parent an opportunity to decide where they will send their kids. it calls for the end of teacher tenure and the end of social promotion of our children. we cannot wait any longer. i will not wait five years. there are thousands of children. we have to do something now. my plan will do that. thank you for the opportunity to be here. [applause]
>> how can you improve education at a time when every budget will be cut? >> the budget is a statement of our priorities as a people. i offered a balanced budget proposal that protected education. it is also why i work with my wife on an education plan. we worked for 10 months on our plan. we talked to parents, but education experts. it does not matter what you call a school. it can be a magnet school or
technical school. the hallmark of a successful school is one that has a principal that can lead, teachers that can be created if. what we need is a plan that will allow every school to be innovative and do the things you see down here. it will also cut administrative costs by taking power away from bureaucrats. and giving it to principles and teachers at the local level. i don't cut a nickel to get there. i can -- i am the only person i can say that. i have been pointing out that your budget proposal would cut more from education than jim
biggons ever did. your plan would cut $533 million. here is the number, $533 million. how much will you cut it this is not the right number? >> the budget issue is important. i read your plan. it seeks to cut education as well. you have included a decrease in funding for the entire state which includes education. 70% of the payroll is education. we all have to realize our state has challenges. i've visited schools and businesses. we leave the country in unemployment, foreclosures.
i said consistently my opponent has -- it seeks reduction in salary for state employees across the state. nowhere does it call for the layoff of a single teacher. >> you have a minute to rebut. >> brian was smart enough not to use the word layoff. he talked about salary reductions. his plan would lead to teachers being fired. it is also true that as an attorney general he knows he cannot reduce teacher salaries. he failed to address his plan would divert $110 million, money that is scheduled to reduce
class size and diverts that to the general fund. then there is the voucher plan. your plan will cut education. the question is how much? what do you think? >> we actually have not ask you the question yet. considering the state faces a $3 billion shortfall, how can you improve education when every budget is being cut? >> that is the hallmark of my plan, to change the delivery of education systemically. my plan calls for merit pay to reward good teachers. i am proud of the fact my plan calls for choice. every parent should decide where their children will attend
school. my plan calls for the end of teacher tenure. we have to give them the ability to deliver a quality education. we need to report the good teachers. if there are teachers that should not be in the classroom, perhaps there needs to be a change. i would like to hear from your most recent budget plan calls for the reduction of $200 million to education. >> i don't know where you are getting your numbers. that would not impact education. let me tell you about the principal at green valley high school. my son is about to start there.
we talked to jeff about what he thought needed to be done to make it possible for every school to innovate. the best example is of $6,000 allocated in nevada, the principal had discretion over only $100. we need to give principals more discretion so every school can improve. only a plan allows certain schools to move forward. my plan gives every school the ability to innovate. >> do you wish to run but? >> i do. i read my opponent's plan and it is good.
it uses envision, which will be used in the future. i had an opportunity to visit with school superintendents. as far as it goes, if it is fine but we need to break the mold. we cannot wait for the five years to change this system. by that time thousands of children will have gone through. my plan will allow for a change immediately. it will call for the end up social promotion so no child hits grade 3 without being able to read. it will give principals the ability to have local control in those schools. >> we understand it will be hard to divorce the budget from the education issue.
the school district has looked into privatizing school lunches and found you could not save the money. what evidence do you have there are cost-saving measures to be achieved? >> we need to make sure we understand what we are talking about. we met with everyone that would talk to us about education. i had a meeting with a bus driver. he passionately describes how much she loves it. he had a roll of quarters every day to make sure every child that forgot their lunch money had the ability to do that. when we talk about privatization we need to make sure that we have qualified people in positions to do the job.
transportation is a very important function. parents trust the school district to deliver their children to school. we need to use the highest standard to make sure our children are safe. brian talk about privatization. the superintendent criticized it because he did not believe it would save the money. we need to be careful when we talk about privatization and to make sure that the people are trained and able to do their important jobs. the other thing that needs to be pointed at is that he says it will be funded by room tax. the problem is that andrew klinger says there is only $95
million. you are short another $205 million. i think my math is pretty good. >> i will not question the math. this is about education. the question was about privatization. what is important to note is there is the definition of insanity. if we continue to do the same things the same way we cannot expect different results. i had a tremendous amount of respect for the superintendent of this school district. i understand some of my ideas will be criticized because they are different. we think there are folks that should have the ability to see if they can do it more
efficiently. we need to break the mold. >> your rebuttal? >> next question. >> how does giving principals control over their budget stretch of education dollars? >> one of the things i have done is i've visited schools in the clark county, douglas county and met with those individual principals. they would like to have the ability to decide how best to spend their dollars. they may be locked into textbooks and supplies. they would use grants to provide a chunk of money to those school districts so they can decide how best to deliver education.
a school in north las vegas has different needs than other places. it is important that each of the counties have the ability to deliver the best possible education. >> what we need is more people like [unintelligible] i was at an elementary school for several hours. i have never met anyone with as much energy. she brought her teachers together, brought parents together and they transformed that school. we need to empower principles like katie. it is about giving every school the opportunity to innovate. give certainwould schools innovation.
we need to give that ability to every school. brian talks about grants come up but after he has cut this money that will lead to firing of the teachers, and after he funnels $100 million away from public education, i don't know how he will pay for it. >> my opponent is consistently inaccurate. and i will challenge you to look in my plan anywhere, it does not call for the layoff of any teachers. he can't concede it that he will roll over furloughs. we are dwelling in the negative. there is a lot of opportunity for schools across the state. my plan gives those school districts the ability to make
the decisions that are best for their schools. in rollins will be different. we -- enrollment will be different. my plan would give those superintendents' the ability to do that. >> both of you say you want autonomy in the school come up but i don't see how it leads to improved results. >> i am happy to respond. i think it will because the principles will have the ability to decide maybe i need more math teachers, maybe i need more teachers to address those who don't speak english. maybe we need to invest more in technology. maybe i need to have smaller
class sizes. it gives the principles and teachers the ability to customize and education for their kids. >> you have a minute to respond. >> brian released a budget plan early in the year. then i put out my education plan and the released his education plan. his education plan sounds real nice but there is not much substance. brian cannot do the things he says because of this budget plan. if you take the voucher proposal that is $100 million that will not be available to schools because he has chosen to
subsidize the private education of a handful of students. 96% of students go to public school. his plan would help of 4% who don't. >> the fifth largest school district in the nation. is it time to break up the clark county school district? >> we need to change where the power is. we need to take the power away from the bureaucrats and give it to principals and teachers at the local level so they can determine what their schedules are and what their curriculum should be. that is what my plan would give every school. that will transform how we deliver education.
if people decide their school districts are too large, then they should make whatever changes they deem appropriate. i used one elementary school. when katie and her teachers sent down they determined they had too many children with reading problems. they were tracking down every other student. they decided they would hire four reading specialists that could pay attention to kids with problems. they determined the best way to fund that was to have librarians go to part-time status. it would have delivered better education but there was a regulation that required them to have a full-time librarian. somebody somewhere else should not be hampering parents and
teachers whose only wish is to improve their schools. if every other school at the right to do what they want we could transform the way we deliver education. >> we have kids waiting to get into charter schools. it is important for kids to have choice. it creates competition. i am convinced by having about charisse and giving parents a choice, at a fabulous school like this you have to get into a lottery.
it may be the beginning of several more schools like this. with referred to the question, breaking up the school district. i have asked that question to the experts. it has not demonstrated it can save money. as i stand here now, i am not sure it is a great idea. >> [inaudible] that is the fundamental problem with his plan. it helps 4% of kids. every parent in clark county and other captives could vote with their feet. if the school does that meet the needs they can go to another school. he says this is a small amount. if you will supply 4% times
$6,000 every child is allocated, that equals $100 million. to cut $100 million from public education is wrong. it would take money from this school. >> our next question is from the principle of whitney elementary school. >> i want to know what you will do to bring in quality instructors and how we can save jobs. >> i did not hear the first part of that question. >> i want to know what you will do to bring in quality >> -- bring in quality instructors? >> with regard to bringing all
the instructions if she means teachers -- my plan will reward the greatest teachers in our state. when a teacher from out of state sees they will be rewarded, there has been a lot of discussion with regard to value added measurement. it is important a teacher is looking to come to nevada will see the state has broken the mold. it will reward good scools for -- good schools for --that was the point of my plan. it calls for a modest reduction of salaries for all employees,
but the point is so we don't have mass layoffs. why would we want to lay anyone off when we leave the country? we are in a budget crisis. >> do you have a response? >> the fact is he is calling for 20% reductions. he is asking teachers to do something they won't do. his plan will not work and will cut millions of dollars from public education. if you don't believe my math go to my web site. layy out brina's plan and out how i reach the numbers. i think what she does is
amazing. she is an example of what we need to do in every school. she gets up at 5:00 in the morning to make sure her children had something to eat. we need more principles like sherry. >> your rebuttal. >> i am proud of my plan. we are not going to go through this over again. we need to work hard to improve education. we need to break the status quo. we need to be aggressive. >> let's build into that. what yardstick will you use to determine how you measure your plans are successful?
>> that is a good question. my plan would provide freedom to principles and parents so there school can be whatever they want it to be. we also demand responsibility. we need tough accountability measures. teachers spend one-third of their time preparing children for a test. we put a pencil in a child's hand and expect them to fill in the right bubble. that is the goal of education and that is wrong. we heard about a first grade student named sally. sally's teacher handed out an assignment. he noticed that sally was drawing a picture. he said, what are you drawing?
sally said i am drawing a picture of god. he said but no one knows what god looks like. sally said they will in a minute. they are creative. we need to allow our students to be what ever they want to be. their hand to make sure they fill in the right of all. -- fill in the right bubble. not too long ago in college i was writing a paper and there was no internet. we have no idea what the world will be like in 20 years. we need to ensure that every child is created so they can deal with the world. it allows children to be creative and schools to be
innovative. >> our children deserve the best possible education. how will we hold teachers accountable? one of the mysteries for a lot of parents is they don't know anything about the teacher their child will be taught by. this plan would grade schools and would tell a parent what type of school. it then school failed twice in a row they could change schools. my plan accounts for the growth of students. there are 37 categories that schools are rated on. my plan would allow -- it would look at the whole picture and allow for parents to know the
quality of the school. >> would you like to rebut? >> i would. his plan has nice thoughts but there is no detail. if i were grading his plan i would give it an incomplete. he does not provide detail on how he would grade. if the next governor will provide free them to schools, and if we will have tough accountability, then we need to be specific about the accountability we ask for. my plan calls for multiple measures so we don't rely on standardized testing, so our children can be creative. >> you both said that none of you have -- how would you set
up and accountability process? >> we have a process now. we need somebody who is independent who can operate these schools, but there has been a lot of media attention for value added that method. it is something they will use in the l.a. school district. it would use test scores as a 50% portion of how we will leisured teachers. >> specifically? >> my plan calls for multiple measures. we will still have test sets, but i call for using technology so it takes less time so teachers have more time to teach. we also need to look at graduation rates and the
cultural programs. i also say we need to provide information. i provide a real choice. as students will be able to vote with their feet and take their child to whatever school then they will need information about various schools. my plan calls for more information to be available. we will measure teachers in many ways and will provide that information so they can make a true choice. >> we talked about accountability. how do you plan to get rid of teachers underperforming when you have union contracts? >> that is one of the hallmarks of my plan, and being a teacher tenure. if you are a teacher in nevada you receive tenure after one year.
if it is important and goes back to accountability and rewarding the good teachers and giving them resources to improve. the way to do that is to end teacher tenure. as i visited with some of the principles, some of them don't want to go through the frustration of that process. it is important we back up those folks -- id is all about those kids. the most important factor is the teacher in the classroom. the single most important component is an effective teacher. if there is one underperforming we cannot wait to make a change because thousands of children have moved through the system.
plan calls for extending tenure. >> your response. >> nothing is more frustrating than a bad teacher to a good teacher. most teachers do their job well. i agree with brian. we need to hold teachers accountable. if they are not doing their job they need to find something else to do. maybe this is the one time we agreed tonight. >> what about union contracts? >> what nevada needs is an advocate for education. i think if you have real reform, it bothers everybody. i think there were people that
were surprised by my plan. i am a democrat and i am talking about teachers losing their jobs. if they don't do well. my plan is full of reform that has rubbed everyone a little bit the wrong way. i think my job is to advocate for reform that will transform education. if we are going to put our people back to work then we need an education system we can be proud of. >> this next question -- [inaudible] your plans don't focus on class size. >> class sizes are large so sometimes it is hard to approach the teacher and get help on a problem.
>> how would you handle class sizes that has swelled to 45 students in high school? >> we need to give more authority to local communities to determine how the money is spent. that will allow them to address class size and curriculum. i think the inconsistency is what brian has said. in his budget plan he said $110 million currently allocated for class size reduction is money used to reduce class size for second graders. he says that money should be diverted to carson city. when i began to criticize him he said something else. in his education plan he wants
to give that money to local school districts. it sounds similar to what i said in march. i wonder why it was in his education plan this summer. >> your response. >> classroom size reduction is important. my plan addresses her concern exactly. my plan calls for local control, so a school district can decide do we want to use this money to make classroom sizes smaller tax do we want to do it in the fifth grade? -- make classroom sizes smaller banks it is important that they have that flexibility to make those decisions best for their kids. >> a rebuttal?
>> absolutely. recently i was talking to a kindergarten teacher who described what her day is like. she has 45-year olds all day long. -- 40 5-year-olds. that is why it is important. she described to me how she buys clothes sticks and pencils because resources are lacking at her school. brian and i seemed to agree that the problem is brian cannot fund class size reduction. his budget puts that money someplace else. i balance the budget without using education dollars. brien cannot say that.
>> this question is for brian sandoval. the empowerment model gives principals more control over budget. our schools dependent on private money and how do you plan to get those private donor's tax -- get private donors? >> we will have me in vision schools. i have read mr. reid's plan. it is a repackaging of in power meant. i've visited -- repackaging of empowerment. i think it should be expanded.
that is something i support it with in my plan. it will go to invasion schools -- envision schools. we have to have open enrollment to give kids a choice, whether it be a charter school or public school. >> the problem with empowerment enoughdoesn't empower people. ed schoolge is would be available to every student -- edge schools would be available to every student. my plan would allow every school to pay on that model so that the parents and the principal could decide what they want at school today. we don't need all the strings
attached. we need to give freedom to people at the community level. it would fully fund that effort. that is how my plan is different. >> the law already allows for empowerment schools. they have the envision schools. these smaller schools are already empowerment schools. they have the ability to make those decisions because they're administration is so small. the issue with the edge school as it does not change anything. we need to break the status quo. we cannot wait another five years for students to receive benefits they deserve. my plan would call for an immediate change to help every child.
>> this next question is for mr. reid. students are worried the voucher programs will leave a disproportionately amount of low-income schools at -- low income students at schools. >> art some of the worst schools getting worse? how does that affect your plan? >> how do you plan on addressing inequities? >> you give opportunities to every school to be what they want to be. then you provide assistance to those schools. it would fund $220 million in cuts we would reinvest to the classroom. part of that includes providing teachers and incentive to teach in schools that have more trouble.
i provide other countries that would be available to schools having more difficulty. i believe my plan gives opportunity to every school in nevada. there is also funding for that plant in my budget. brian's plan would leave it to the results the student mentioned. the incentives in his plan are only available to the schools that performed well. he punishes poor performing schools and it rewards best schools even more. that will exacerbate inequities. my plan fully funds opportunities to become everything they want to pay. >> my plan calls for choice. i think parents deserve choice.
they should have the ability to send their kids to a school they feel best fits their child's need. i think that will create competition. it will make the public schools better. people are waiting in line to get in this school because this is so innovative. there are other kids that would like to have the ability to attend this charter schools. i think parents deserve choice. they have the ability to send their kids to back its goals, but they have to wait in line. competition is good and it will be the best thing for kids in this state. >> which parents should have what choice? brian's plan gives a small number of students choice.
if your child attends a private school, under the voucher plan you could get almost $6,000 a year to subsidize that. if you have a child in a public school and the child wants to attend a private school, they would get $6,000. what good does that do them? brien gives choice to a limited number of people. my plan gives choice to all students. that is why my plan is better. >> we want to move on to higher education. neither of your plans address higher education. what are your plans to address higher education. >> i hate to disagree, but that is not right.
the budget proposal would cut 12%. my plan fully funds education. why is that important? we all be there know someone or are close to someone that has lost their jobs. it is impossible to have a quality of life without a job. there is no better engine to create jobs and higher education. mit, a fine institution, the ideas dreamed up are responsible for creating 6000 companies that have employed 1.1 million people and irresponsible for $232 billion. there is nothing stopping us from doing that, but we need to build our higher education
system so it can provide the good ideas so people can go back to work. you cannot do that if you are cutting higher education. higher education is key for our future. it is important for economic reasons but we have a moral obligation. i was at the university of nevada last week. she said look at these students, they could not be here but for the millennium scholarship. we need to fully fund education so we create economic opportunities. the fund it so people like betty can create opportunities for themselves. >> i have enjoyed the opportunity to meet with the chancellor. i am a brown graduate of unr.
i think our universities are important to the future of our state. i need to remind our component that university employees are state employees. as part of your budget plan it includes a continuation of furloughs. that.t want to dwell on i want to dwell on a solution. i met with the chancellor and they would like to have the ability to maintain their tuition they earn from out of state students. it picks them independent from the state budget. i will work hard to give them that ability to make decisions for their budgets. >> we have run out of time on
this question. >> that is all the time we have on this hour. we want to make sure both candidates have time to let everyone know where they stand. >> i want to thank everyone for their attendance for this debate. i want to thank brian and the sponsors. i started this debate with a strong accusation. i said brian was not a strong leader because strong leaders are consistent. i'm afraid there are two brian sandovals. the one trying to win a primary campaign and release a budget that would cut education. jim gibbons cut $300 million. brian sandoval has proposed to cut its $533 million.
i give him an opportunity to explain that and he did not. the second brian sandoval released an education plan describing what he would do. a budget is a statement of your priorities. you cannot do the nice things he talks about if you cut it the way he did. nevada it needs a leader that is an advocate for education. and says education is important to our future. we will never have a first rate the economy if we except second- rate schools. education is key to our economy. companies that might be considering not will not come here if they think we don't have an educated workforce.
executives will not bring their children here if they don't believe children can get a good education. if less than half our kids are graduating high-school we need to be ashamed of ourselves. we need to put our people back to work. >> your closing statement. >> i would like to thank everyone who has attended this evening and mr. agassi for sponsoring this important event. i will finish where i started, education is important to me on a personal level and for the people of nevada. i left a lifetime appointment because i care about the future of this state. it is important given the graduation rates that we need to do something different. we can no longer except the status quo.
my plan calls for real accountability, real choice, and dean teacher tenure and the social promotion. -- ending teacher tenure. i am optimistic about the future of our state. if i have the ability to be elected your next governor, and iw ould like to ask for your vote, i will work hard to improve education in the nevada. god bless all of you and the great state of nevada. thank you very much. [applause] >> this morning i visited with dr. anne peters.
she is a local physician and internal medicine to have her identity stolen by a team of criminals operating a massive fraud scheme. she was doing what she loved to do, providing care to those in need. but a group of scam artists stole her name and medicare provider #and began to bill medicare for services. that fraud used an undercover informant. by the time we stopped the operation, they had already laundered as much as $4.7 million under 19 different provider games. today nearly all that money has been recovered. when we caught those perpetrators, we did not find fraudulent medical records. we found a stockpile of
dangerous weapons, including assault rifles, machine guns, and brass knuckles. >> dhhs held a summit on health care fraud prevention. watch it tonight on c-span, beginning at 9:30 eastern. "book tv" continues tonight with the textbook industry and right thing a text book, including three volumes, "the story of science." . c-span2. >> united states of america joins every other industrial nation in the world that says health care is a right not privilege.
[captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] >> now a discussion on the federal reserve and the economy. this is from this morning's "washington journal." this is a half hour. we turn our attention to the economy and the federal reserve. george melloan from "the wall street journal", with them more than a 50 years. thanks for being with us. >> my pleasure. host: how can you create confidence in the u.s. economy? guest: that is a good question. one way to do it, very quickly, would be to make the. 2003 tax the.
-- make the 2003 tax cut permanent. host: you say that here is the flood thehe fed's can banks with liquidity in order to stimulate economic growth, but that will not necessarily stimulate the demand for this money. would you elaborate? guest: the power of the fed is often exaggerated. it can create money, which is very important. but it does not necessarily mean that people are going to lend that money or borrow that money and that this will actually translate into economic growth. borrowing money is something that people do very judiciously.
they usually do very juciously. right now people are not in a mood to borrow. there's a lot of money sitti in the bank reserves, $1 trillion. it is not really being used. until people have more confidence in the future of the economy and the future of public policy, they are not going to be very enthusiastic about borrowing money and spending it. host: the presint was talking about the economy yesterday in milwaukee. i want to refer to what you wrote today in the wall street journal, called "the obama recovery." it says the only major obama spiries that have not passed r. cap and trade, tabb and tax,
blocked by a handful of democrats. you have called some of this legislation dubious. guest: dubious because it is highly complex. we are talking about a 2008 bill -- 2000-page bill. it is law. this is the financial reform bill. these are enormous pieces of legislation and have the effect of laws. even some of the people who voted for them admitted they had not read them entirely. that does not create a great deal of confidence in the public. when legislators passed huge bills and then adm they really don't know what they voted for. of that's why i said some
this was dubious. host: the president, yesterday in milwaukee. >> 8 million americans lost their jobs in this recession. even though we have had eight straight months of private sector job growth, the new jobs have not been coming fast enough. now, here's the honest truth, the plain truth. there is no silver bullet. there's no quick fix to these problems. i knew when i was running for office and i certainly knew by the time i was born in -- sworn in, i knew it would take time to reverse the damage of a decade's worth of policies that saw too few people getting ample. to be in the middle ample -- getting into the middle class.
host: how do you turn things around and what role does the dead played in the larger picture of the u.s. economy? guest: the fed plays an important role. it creates money and regulates banks. but i think that the only way you can turn the ecomy around and get it to grow again is to create confidence among small business, investors, the people who creatjobs. i don't think the measure is the president's announced yesterday will actually do that. these are a subsidy things. what business needs is confidence. there is so much regulation coming down the road and so much cost coming down the road that businesses don't know what to
expect. taxes may go up next year. that again cuts into the potential for businesses to earn a profit and survive. host: peter orszag today in the new york times said his solution is to keep the bush tax cuts across the board but then get rid of them in 2013. guest: i don't think it is a great idea to deadline for when to raise taxes. people are not in a mood to have their taxes raised any time in the future. so i don't think it is such a great idea to set a date of 2013. host: tomorrow the president will be in cleveland talking about the economy and its proposals will businesses to invest in capital and infrastructure this year and next year, 100% would be tax
deductible. good idea? guest: i don't know. this has been used many times before. it is not seem to have -- the idea of exemptingapital expenditures, that has been attempted, amortization of capital expenditure, those things. i don't know that that has been terribly effective over the years. better than nothing. host: what is your confidence level in the u.s. economy? guest: not very high. let's go to the republican line from texas. caller: 1969 i started a business, 771 employees in 2005. the president and this congress has done everything they can to destroy jobs.
section 342 of the document that mandates quotas. section 342 of the dodd-franc forces individuals to have a certain amount of minorities and women on their staffs. you look at the health care bill, what the liberals don't understand is it has fixed my costs, something i cannot do anything about, mandating my costs. you look at what the epa is doing through a to the country. they have taken over. they have taken over in the state of texas. completely ignoring the laws and constitution. you look at what they did with the car companies. what law is there that goes in the air and fire is the ceo, does away with all the jobs and dealerships? look at what he did with the chrysler corporation. bowing out the senior
bondholders. that is will we are right now. host: a response w for pete. guest: i think that sums it up, a very common attitude among host: business. you wrote a book on the carter administration. there have been some parallels regarding the economic situation that jimmy carter inherited and responded to and what we are dealing with today. are there parallels and is a fair comparison? guest: i think so. i would not want to carry that too far. ne particular parallel was a great expansion. that was not jimmy carter. started with richard nixon.
price controls. and the fed created a lot of money under price controls. we eventually got inflation. price controls are a terrible idea. they destroy the proper functioning of the markets. we don't have that today, thank goodness. but we do have a great deal of economic regulation. that does tend to stifle initiative and investment. host: diana is joining us from florida. good morning. caller: i wanted to start with this. price controls, you see what has happened with gross restores. i want to go back to the beginning and comment about all
the wall street journal reports i have heard this morning that i am disgusted with. the way they say congressman did not know what they were voting for, if obama would have given into the republicans, i watched them vote against everything. it might have turned out to be a good bill if they had cooperated. that is one thing. everything he said is - and it is his interpretation -- everything your guest residences been negative. this is comical. the new health bill.
i already have an increase. my neighbors are having increases. automobile insurance, life insurance, my neighbor's car insurance increased up to it $900 from $700. medicare, the secondary has gone up for me. host: we spoke about health care insurance rates in the last half-hour. another viewer says what are your thoughts on the regulations, whether it is health care or other regulations? this u.s. is the american working public feels one person's regulation and the cost of those regulations could be a
sense of security for those working within the system. guest: first, i am not a republican. i am an independent. i am not speaking on a partisan basis. medicare is marvelous. i benefit from it myself. it is too expensive. as a whole concept ofedicare , it will beanded an even more expenve. what this means is the federal deficits will continue to b in the trillions of dollars. the trillions of dollars. the country cannot afford this over the long term. as the lady mentioned, prices of various insurance services are goin already.
that is despitebamacare or perhaps in anticipation of the costs that will occur under obamacare. so we are not looking at a very bright future here in terms of costs. the other great thread out there is with the fed's having created all this money sitting in the bank's, we have a very serious threat of inflation. as the lady said, you can see some evidence of vegetables restore. do shopping every week or so. -- you can see evidence at grocery stores. host: george melloan spent 50 years at the wall street journal and retired in 2006, continuing tatibute to "the wall street journal". you said in a recent article that the federal stimulus
program totaled $786 billion and failed. why has it failed to create jobs or jump start the economy? guest: stimulus programs never have succeeded really because there is a basic flaw. in order for the government to spend money, esther take that money away from somebody else. very often, it takes the money away from productive uses and spends it on unproductive projects. so the whole concept of stimulus -- it is what was promoted many years ago, it is very popular with politicians because it gives them the opportunity to spend money, whh is what they like to do.
but stimulus -- government stimulus has never worked. host: independent line from caller:. i am from sarasota, florida. i like to have your viewpoint about the economy. when you testified in front of congress about tens of millions of us in the united states, why has this not been corrected by congress and the senate? congress and the senate? guest: asset ffeiture, i am not an expert on that. i have heard about it. i think it is a real problem. it has gotten to be something that is a high-handed treatment
of a company. i think it's probably should be addressed. host: now we have a repubcan from. new from caller: good morning. mr. malone is very insightful. our country operates byit capital operates. can take a good news and bad ne. the difficulty is when uncertainty arises because of calculations. part of the problem with the economy today is there's an enormous amount of uncertainty as to where the countrys going in terms of regulation and as far as the tax policy. the tax cuts are essential, especially in a fragile market. why not have payroll cuts?
second, the gentleman is correct, simply spending one's way out ofifficulties simply does not work. it increases the deficit. it mak money cheaper. the problem is when people are overleveraged in an uncertain environment, they do not want the money available. so the moneyman sits there. the gentleman is very wise. i appreciatthe opportunity to express my opinion. host: thank. we will get a response. guest: thanks very much for that. not much i can add to that. i agree. host: david from n york on the democrats' line. caller: good morning. i was just wondering, if the
fed is lending banks money at 0% or whatever, why is it not possible for theto lend that same money to buy out people's mortgages at a higher rate and let them buy them back at a lower rate, which would stimulate people spending and putting more money back into the economy? guest: yes, i not quite sure i understood the question. the federal reserve has been buying mortgage-backed securities from fannie mae and freddie mac, the two big government-sponsored and now actually government-controlled mortgage agencies, secondary markets. in fact, the fed has lost over a trillion dollars worth of those mortgage-backed securities.
that is as a means of supporting that particular market. it does have the effect of holding down mortgage rates, which are very low. right low but that does not seem to have had a great benefit in terms of stimulating the housing market. it has had some benefit, i suppose, but not much. host: you wrote about this iue in july. how have low interes rates helped buyers and helped those trying to keep credit card rates down and hurt investors and those wanting to save? guest: that is a big problem. that is especially a big problem for pension funds. many millions of people depend on pension funds, particularly public employees who have
defined benefit pension plans. the people who run the pension funds are finding it very difficult to get a decent return. returns areelow the returns they projected in calculating whether they will be able to meet these decline pension obligations in the future. so many of them are turning to more risky ventures like hedge funds and that sort of thing. that is not very encouraging, people running pension funds who have a very serious obligation to a lot of millions of people if they are taking risky ventures just to try to make a decent return. host: we are talking with orge melloan, formal editorial page is deputy editor of the wall street journal. tallon is joining us from clark
on the independent line. -- caroline is joining us from florida. health: if nancy pelosi's care bill had gone through the care bill had gone through the senate , rather than having it stopped by the president and gutted by the senate, by both of them combined, we would have had a decent, affordable health care system because it would have included a public option. it would have negotiated drug pric. it would have done all the things people don'tant it. that is why you attack nancy pelosi. host: our guest has covered the fed, but does not serve on the federal reserve board. guest: well, what you are
suggesting is we should have totally nationalized the health- care system. in some ways that would be a lot simpler than what we have right now. but it also -- we would face the sort of thing that you he in england where health care is basicallyationed. and where it takes an enormous chunk out of the federal budget and the government budgets. we couldn't think sustain a national health-care system. i don't think you would like it very well after you experience it a few years. host: one of our viewers with this comment from our twitter page. in this recession, the economy will not enter self-sustaining growth until private-sector balance sheets are repaired.
host: we can hear you push. please go ahead. caller: i have been self- employed since 1996. my dream was to be a hair stylist. i have owned a welding shop before. in wilmington, we are were so excited when obama was going to be the president because we were thinking we are going to get some insurance. i have been without health insurance for almost 17 years. and i am so disappointed and everybody in north carolina that i known in the eastern part, are on the beaches, all the construction, men cannot even get employment. the mexicans have completely
taken over a lot of jobs. i am so disappointed that we are allowing all these mexicans -- and now all these people to come in to our country, the united states, and take american people's jobs. i hear this every day. i am cutting here. i am meeting millions of people. i think that number one we need to get obama out of the presidency. i think he is a joke. i think that we have just almost gone to zero with employment. guest: on the immigration issue, yes, emigration -- the immigration policy has been broken for many years. it should have been fixed. there was as time went the entry of workers, particularly from
mexico and south and central america was well controlled. they were brought in under guest worker programs to work on farms and to seasonal labor, but that all was as broken down, and instead of giving illegal immigration on a temporary basis, you have had over a good many of years illegal immigration. of course people resent that. the whole system is just -- it can be easily fixed, but has not been. >> what would it take your confidence to be restored in the u.s. economy moving ahead? >> as i mentioned before, making
the 2001/2003 tax cut permanent would certainly help. and i think some of the laws that have been passed, certainly no more stimulus spending. that has not worked. it will not work. that should be renounced. i think some of the bills that have been passed me to b looked at again. -- need to be looked at again. they're much too complicated. they have destroyed confidence in the congress, and i think that would certainly help. host: george melloan jojoining .
tv" continues tonight, primetime, tonight on c-span2. >> at long last, the united states of america joins every other industrial nation in the world that says health care is a right, not a privilege. >> congressman had been holding a town hall meetings, and we have been covering them. watch them on the c-span video library. it is all searchable on your computer any time. >> wednesday, the economy and the white house's attempt to stimulate it. in the issues driving the 2010
what was your impression of that debate in 2003? >> it was the same argument we are having today. that bill happened in 2003, and yet still, jobs, the economy, we in the minds of everybody. it makes me wonder if we are going to hit the repeat buttons in seven years. host: what is the sense of whether the tax cuts will be extended? they will be extended by
the middle class. those tax cuts will be extended. a lot of republicans and a lot of democrats want to extend it everything because the economy is weak and they do not want to ruffle feathers. democratic leaders have said they will only did the cat -- do that tax cuts for the middle class. that might set up a showdown when the congress comes back. host: this was an article about where the tax cuts would be. the chart says if your income is between $137,000.200 and taxsand dollars, the cuthe rate would go up.
this is part of the extension of these tax cuts at least for those under 250,000, it is the subtext of the president on a broad range of tax issues. guest: you have to look at the report as current law. the majority leader says they will take the second top bracket and split it. the will be a split from someone who actually gets a tax increase and who does not. that is based on current law. we do not what -- we do not know what congress is going to do. it could make that only the wealthy could get the increase and everybody else does not. host: how portis is this to be done before the election? guest: it is huge.
the senate will take the lead on this. the majority leader said that tax cuts will be extended. that makes me wonder if the wealthy tax cut are not want to be extended. if that fight happens that could make this go beyond the election. the easy way would be to extend them all, and democratic strategists have said extend them all, get it done. it will help the economy. it will help democrats as well, but it is important to remember the arguments of supply and demand are premature. we are dealing with an economy that has a cold. in our minds we are seized by this fear of what is gonna happen next. one thing, was to do is say for the next year nothing is going to change with the tax code. make your plans. that is what people have told me on both sides of the aisle.
host: let's go to the viewers. here is barbara in maryland. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. i do not believe the tax cuts for the wealthy should be extended. they have not done anything for us in the past 10 years. the difference between the were really wealthy in this country and the middle and lower income people is just unreal. we are ordinary people, hard- working, paid our taxes, and we are struggling to make ends meet. i remember when bill gates' father said that the wealthy did not need the tax breaks. of what the democrats to stand up and be strong. thank you. guest: she is right. a lot of times the wealthy cannot meet the cuts because
they have the disposable income to pay for things they want be on the tax cuts. the issue is the wealthy at the ones doing the spending. if you look at a recent poll inches above the were spinning around $160 a day purseversus me income people spending $60 a day. they are the only ones spending right now. she makes a valid point. the wealthy cannot afford that, but psychologically it is the issue. if you give them an increase, will they pulled back. host: republican -- democratic caller in woodbridge, virginia. caller: make sure you meet your set. how are you doing. i have to agree with the last caller because she has a great
point. for the last couple years -- host: make sure you meet your set. caller: extending the tax cuts for the wealthy to me is not a great idea. you say that they spend at least $160 and the lower and middle class people spend about $60. let me point out to you it does not matter at all what tax cuts they get. they are most likely going to hold on to their money. my thing is this -- and i have been looking at c-span for the past couple of months and the ugly rhetoric i hear is taxes. what can we do for the middle- class and poor people in order to stabilize the taxes from this
point on? can you answer that question? guest: for the middle class only? that would be the tax cuts. republicans and democrats believe those cuts should be extended. many believe they should be made permanent. right now with the economy is where taking a short review of for a year scene where we are and then make a decision later. everyone on capitol hill agrees that tax cuts for the middle class should be extended, if not made permanent. host: to antioch, california. caller: thank you. i am listening to the comments, and i am terribly disappointed that the whole argument in class warfare is trying to divide people.
the american dream is to work hard, you may be poor, you may be but a class, it is -- but if the government would get out of the way and not regulate and spent money, then people could be so-called rich. for everyone in the government, at least nowadays, to always say we're a help the middle class, we are right to help the poor, i want to see the government help every american, and i am so sick and tired of everyone saying we're only going to do this to help the middle class. i am a supporter of ronald reagan. i think all votes are raised when taxes are lower, said that died that just called ahead of me, what is he going to do? it is bs. if the government would stop spending our money, they do not understand when the government spends money, it is our money.
i want to see the private sector increase and grow, and they cannot grow, they cannot expand, people cannot get ahead in life if the government is spending money on their own private little projects that help certain classes. host: any thoughts she is raising all the votes. guest: when she talked about class warfare, i am said that, too. if we start to realize we are in this together, we would have a better understanding of what needs to get done. when she talks about tax cuts for the wealthy, many people cannot think that $250,000 a year is likely. people in that area are struggling to make ends meet in several areas of the country.
she touches upon a lot of good points saying let's get over this idea of partisanship and work together. so far we have not seen that. i'm disappointed with it, too. host: pamela on our independence line. caller: how are you doing today? we should not be helping the lower and middle classes. we should help everybody. as you were saying, the majority of the money being spent is being spent by the wealthy in the country right now. personally, myself, i am in the lower class, as i just get out of the military. i did my stint, pulled my time in iraq, and i am still struggling. i just got out of the military. it is very hard finding a job.
when having a tax increase again, it will make life harder on us than it is now. we have enough problems as it is try to make ends meet, especially if we have young children. people cannot buy diapers, the food that their kids need, which cannot get the medicarl care thy need. roberts host: , you are just out of the military. were you able to land a job? caller: no, i have not. i am getting recertified as and e.m.t.. guest: that you for your service, first of all, and second of all, i understand how to the diapers all are. in your case, that congress is
looking to extend unemployment. they have done that. they might continue to do so until we turn a corner. when you do get a job, your chances are congress will not be extending or increasing any sort of taxes on you. the fight is on the people making $250,000 a year. host: on the unemployment, is this an extension that congress would have to take up before the end of the session? guest: november 30 is when it ends, and they will have to do it again or have some discussion to it. there were balls in congress, some democratic lawmakers were saying, when do we make an end to this benefit? that argument has been pushed off to the side because since then the economy has gotten worse. there have been private sector job increases.
the perception of the economy is is not getting better. right now is not the time to pull the rug out from people who are working. host: what the make of that parallel track that the president is going down, him calling going -- calling for the senate to extend the tax cuts for those under $250,000? tomorrow he is set to announce another round of breaks for businesses, allowing them to extend their write-offs? what is the strategy behind this? guest: the goal is to bring the focus back to the economy. people question the president when he came back from his trip and spoke about iraq. the economy is on fire. why don't you talk about the economy? this is to sharpen the focus on the economy. when the senate comes back next week, one of the first votes if not the first will be on the
small business bill. that bill gives small businesses $12 billion in tax relief and create a lending pool which banks get this money, and if they do not spend it out to small businesses, the banks spend a higher interest rate on the money, which means give it a smaller businesses or paid the price. hopefully that will get capital going to the small businesses. for tomorrow, the president will talk about a research and development tax credit which has been talked about for at least 20 years and also allowing small businesses or businesses to expense all their capital investments on certain plants and equipment. what that means is if a company buys a machine for $100, they can take that accident and charges against their taxable income, which will give them more money. the question is, what are they
going to do with it? if people are not coming in to their shops to buy things, then is that money sitting there? are they going to expand? what are they doing with that? on the r and d tax credit, that basically says it goes the larger companies, and it basically says hire people inside the united states to research and develop x. that is a good thing because it does not deal with demand. it says did not make this which it. make a good, will sell at later on. that is a pretty good thing because right now that is not dependent on demand. you can use that money now. host: a reminder, we will cover the president's comments tomorrow in ohio, outside cleveland. live coverage tomorrow at 2:10 p.m. eastern, live on c-span and seized and radio.
15 minutes more with jay heflin. go-ahead. make sure you used your set. friend in oklahoma. go ahead, democrat. caller: my opinion is not going to be popular. i do not think we should extend the tax cuts for anybody. my reason for this is because we are in debt. we have a lot of debt. nobody has asked anybody to sacrifice anything. this is america's chance to sacrifice for their country. thank you. host: she brings up the debt. this is a to budget office
publication that shows the debt soaring. guest: is an argument that says if congress were to allow the tax cuts to expire, it would take a chunk out of the deficit. that is that leads to that because we did not have to borrow as much money. there is an argument, and, brenda, you are not alone. there are print -- democrats on the far left side that agree that said the middle class workers getting $50, $100 out of these paychecks, it is not doing a lot of good for them. why extend them? take care of the deficit, therefore, the debt, and move forward. that argument is out there. right now with the economy the way it is things are skewing toward extending the tax cuts because people did not want to harm economy in any way, even though we do not know basically
if allowing them to be -- allowing them to expire would actually do that. host: bill ahead. caller: yes. i believe that the tax cuts for the middle class should be made permanent, because taxes on a higher bracket people should be totally abolished. host: thank you for your comments. mike in richfield, new jersey. independent. caller: i have a question, sir. what is the percentage of americans that are paying taxes? guest: basically there are 140 tax returns done a year -- 142 tax returns than a year, 2 million of them do not have an adjusted gross income. 140 taxooking at
returns. i do not know what percentage that is. host: is that 140 million? yes guest:. i do not know what percentage is because those are tax returns and i do not know the individual status of each return. host: supposed tax preparers are waiting to see what is going on by the end of the year because that will change investment strategies, they're saving strategies, their tax strategies in general. because guest: the capital gains. if you were to buy a home in december or january, you might have a higher tax to pay if you do it in january. the other issue that is on the horizon, talked about in a couple pockets, if congress does
not extend the tax cuts until next year, pay check will be affected by this january. if congress does nothing, every paycheck is going to reflect a tax increase. this is not like other debates where they can hold off and wait and people will file in april. this tax increase will hit in january. host: anjelica in edgewater, maryland. caller: hello, good morning. with the low taxes, the problem system even warren buffet pays less taxes than his secretary. there's something major-league wrong with the system. it is against the middle class. the crux of the problem, when you look at taxes, the democrats think the tax increases will fall all problems come republicans think tax cuts will
solve all problems. neither one is true. the real problem is you have a government that since the 1970's has been on a spending spree, which is called fiat currency. it allows the government to spend unlimited amounts of money, and the real thing is, when you look at the unfunded liabilities existing, social security, medicare, medicaid, the pension liabilities, and all of these things, the government is on the hook for about $100 trillion. this is not what i am making up. the federal circuit reserve -- someone who works for the federal serve as said this. the government can either go bankrupt or monetize the debt, which is they are going to
devalue currency. guest: touches on a great point about pensions and with the entitlements. those are looming problems that congress is looking at. the issue with the pensions is -- is starting to bubble up with some of the state pensions are underfunded work than they should be, and it is something that some people have said could be a bailout situation for congress down the road. how that all works out, i cannot know. one issue to look at is right now we are looking at there are less people working now than who are retired or we are moving in that direction. when questioned ask is, the people that are newborns, do we have enough people in that population, is there another baby boom coming? recently reports have said it is the lowest birth rate last year than in many years. before that there was a larger
birthrate. are we on the purposes -- on the press as of another baby boom, where those people will grow up, pay taxes, and pay into the entitlement accounts? it is a question that has to be answered, and some people say has to be answered sooner than later. host: lou in pennsylvania. caller: i am in favor of extending the tax cuts to everyone, and i think -- i graduated from college in 1969, and my friends and i thought everyone in this country should be treated equally, rich, poor, muslim, christian, and once we get back to that in this country, we will be a lot better off. we should all get that tax cuts extended. host: would you mind sharing with us what your income range is?
caller: retired, and my in, when i last worked was about $35,000 a year. host: thank you. guest: his argument is gaining a lot of traction here, because of the economy. they think let's do this for a year. let's hold off on any increases until we find all out what the economy looks like in a year and a half. host: huntington beach, california. please make sure you your set. caller: i am sorry, i did not hear what he said. host: we will go to brenda in corona, california. caller: hi. i believe the bush tax cuts should be extended for the
middle class and not for the rich people. icing is that -- have you ever seen the graph that they have down on how much -- how many more millionaires and billionaires we have had in the last 10 years? guest: i have not. caller: now we have 400 billionaires. we really need -- we have a disappearing middle class. i do not believe that the tax cuts, the bush tax cuts, will help the middle class or our small businesses. in the last eight years, i do not believe we have had middle class help. >> one issue that people have said, these tax cuts were
enacted to help the economy grow in terms of having more jobs. guest: brand that has hit upon the fact that these tax cuts did not save us from the economic calamity. why are we extending them. it is shrinking the number of people who are actually saying it, because it is a political year, there is going to be an election, and the economy is too weak. economists cannot say if you allow these tax cuts to expire, the academy will go off a cliff. he did not want to push it. basically it is saying, let's hold back, let's at some certainty to the marketplace of
the people do what they need to do and see what happens. host: about three or four more phone calls. i want asked jay about of proposal the president talked about yesterday, $50 billion in additional spending. the stimulus that was passed in 2009, you can bring up a graphic, what has been spent so far. the bill was $787 billion. they have committed $434 billion so far. why does the president called for an additional stimulus spending on top of that all the money has not been spent out of the previous bill? . .
think this law help us. the economy is not really strong. sometimes, the government has to step in and say we will build a railroad to give a guy a job. host: a couple more quick calls. the head. caller: we have to get back to the mall on ethical body is under in the bible. it is ridiculous for us to have to depend on government to provide housing, food, clothing , for people that should be working but they are not fair -- -- bu they are not.
host: a republican view from california. the next is democratic. caller: i decide a quick comment and a question for a jump -- j. i agree with every caller before may. if they have a great point about government. we should not depend on government to help us regain our ability to live. my question is for jay. these tax cuts and extensions, how did they benefit everyone? i have another question.
you was talking about the deficit. if we do not extend a tax cut, maybe that money could go back into the deficit. give me a clear view picture of how that could work. guest: for your first question, these tax breaks affect the marginal rate. if he get a paycheck and congress does not extend a tax cut, you have less take-home pay. if they do not extend the tax cut, it could create as much as $1 trillion over 10-years to reduce the deficit. the question is more of a short- term answer or long-term answer. in the short term, people think we should keep the tax cut in place so paychecks do not see a tax increase.
>> hello. the upper level and come are the people who create the jobs and give a middle-class the money to spend. no one is ever talking about what we need to do. we need to bring the federal payroll to congress until they can create in come along and do a balanced budget. one thing that clinton did right was reduced the size of federal
government by attrition. no new agencies. let's go back to government -- gdp has not helped at all. >> any final thoughts? guest: president obama has talked about a spending freeze for a lot of agencies. they are trying to basically curvet that. during the clinton years, lawmakers and hassle over $1 million. now people talk about a billion dollars. it shows where the spending has actually gone. if we did give back to bargain
over a million dollars, it could show a sign of improvement. it should be showing less. it could bring the deficit down. i do not know a lot of people want to do that yet considering where the economy is. economy is a big issue. people are scared they will have their jobs. leyou are going to have the sene moved first. usually tax policy begins in the house. the congressman told me in august that the senate was looking to possibly extend of a big tax cut. if that is true, i do none of. it to be interesting to see what
harry reid comes out with the need comes back this week. >> you can read his posting and is articles at thehill.com. thank you for taking time out with this. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] >> this morning, i visited with dr. in peter's who you will hear from later in the program the sea is a local physician and internal medicine doctor who had her identities stolen by a team of criminals operating a massive fraud scheme. she is doing what she loved to do, providing care to those in need. a group of scam artists sold surname and medicare provider -- stole her surname and medicare provider. that fraud was ended using an undercover informant and new tools to track the money. by the time to shed the
operation down, we found they had already laundered as much as $4.7 million under 19 different provider named photographer new the all that money today has been recovered. we cut those perpetrators, and we did not find boxes. we also found a stockpile of dangerous weapons including assault rifles and brass knuckles. >> the department of health and human services held a seminar on health care fraud what did tonight on c-span beginning at 9:30 p.m. eastern freudenthafinr content any time for c-span video library.
we take c-span on the road with our local content vehicle. it is washington your way, the c-span network. it is treated by cable and provided by public service. >> wednesday, president obama travels to ohio to announce new tax incentives. robert gibbs to several questions about that speech at today's white house briefing. gases to questions about the president's plans for new spending on the nation's transportation infrastructure. this is 45 minutes prad
>> yes, ma'am. good afternoon. >> good afternoon. robert, there's a church in gainesville, florida, that says it's going to go ahead and burn copies of the koran to mark the 9/11 anniversary. is the white house -- is there anything the white house is doing to discourage that or prevent them from going ahead with that? >> well, look, i think the best place to look for the views of this administration would be to look at the -- look at what general petraeus said over the weekend. we know that that type of activity -- we know that that type of activity is being transmitted back to places like afghanistan, when general petraeus obviously is our lead commander. as he said, it puts our troops in harm's way. and obviously that -- any type of activity like that would be -- that puts our troops in harm's way would be a concern to this administration. >> but is there any thought from anyone at the white house
to reach out to the pastor of the church -- >> i have not heard of any. >> are you ready to say what the president is going to do saturday to mark the 9/11 anniversary? >> the president will attend a memorial service at the pentagon. i believe the vice president will go to new york. and obviously the first lady and former first lady laura bush are in pennsylvania. i don't have the times on the event at the pentagon with me. yes, ma'am. >> the economic package that you're rolling out, what is the president's legislative strategy for that? is this something he thinks can be passed before election day? and also, is he seeking passage of these measures as one big package or separate measures? >> on the second one, i don't know the answer to one package or several packages. look, i think what the president -- the president will tomorrow outline a series of the proposals, many of which you all have read about and reported on
over the past several days, that he believes continue our strategy to getting our economy moving again and, more importantly, for long-term economic growth. look, i don't think we're under -- we understand what season we've entered in washington. we know that congress won't be here for a lot of time. we certainly hope that there are measures, including some of the ones that the president will outline, that congress will consider. if they don't do that prior to the election, the president and the economic team still believe that these represent some very important ideas in continuing along our path toward economic recovery.
and as i said, most importantly, this is about -- and look, you'll hear the president talk about this a lot tomorrow in cleveland -- this is about long- term economic growth. this isn't about the next 60 days or the next 90 days. this is about how do we get our economy fully back on track, how do we get the millions that want to work back to work, and how do we repair the economic damage that's been going on not just over the past two years but over the past 10 years. we didn't get into this overnight, as i've said countless times. but i think one of the things the president will do tomorrow is will go through the notion of for 10 years we saw rules written for the special interests. we saw a blind eye turned to some of their activities. we saw wages decrease. we saw families rightly more concerned about the future of their children and whether or not the economy that they were going to raise their children in was going to be one that was
capable of passing on the american dream to each and every one of their children. >> are we likely to get an announcement this week on either the consumer agency job or cea? >> no, i have not gotten white smoke on that except to say -- obviously nothing that i know of today. i can't rule out that at some point that may come during the week. yes, sir. >> your former budget director, mr. orszag, wrote in the new york times today that the administration and democrats should compromise with the republicans in congress and extend all of the bush tax cuts for two years and then get rid of them. one of the reasons for that, he said, in terms of keeping the tax cuts in place, is, "higher taxes now would crimp consumer spending, further depressing the already inadequate demand for what firms are capable of producing at full tilt." so your omb director is saying that if you guys go ahead with what you're proposing, which is allowing them to expire on the richest americans --
>> jake, i think that -- i think peter was mostly -- if i read the article correctly, i think peter was mostly discussing the permanence of and the extension of those that involved the middle class. >> but i'm specifically talking about this one -- yes, you're agreed -- >> well, i understand, i understand what you're reading. >> -- on the middle-class part of it. >> i think, in all honesty, in reading the article, i think peter had a congressional relations hat on in terms of what political price congress might have to go through to extend different things. that's not the viewpoint that the president holds. the president -- >> so you disagree that higher taxes, in terms of the bush tax cuts expiring, would crimp consumer spending -- you disagree with that? >> i think that if you make $250,000 a year in this economy, you're probably not putting off the purchase of a big-screen tv. i just -- i don't think your consumer demand is if you make a quarter of a million dollars
or $400,000 a year in this economy, i don't think you're putting off the purchase of a new suit or a new car because you make $400,000 a year. if you made $40,000 a year, i think you're putting off a lot of purchases based on the fact that you don't have it, and that impacts consumer demand. >> so you disagree with peter? >> again, i don't -- the way i read the article, jake, is that peter is not making that argument about the high-end tax cuts. he's making that argument about the middle-class tax cuts, which the president certainly agrees that not extending them will certainly have an impact. the president will argue tomorrow that we should extend those middle-class tax cuts as in not doing so would most assuredly hurt our economy. but again, i think if you're making $250,000 or $400,000 or $600,000 or $800,000 in this economy, you're not putting off the purchase of -- there's not a great crush on -- or pullback in your consumer demand.
this economy is not hurting people that make $800,000 a year, it's hurting families that are making $40,000 a year. >> and if could do a follow-up. there's a lot of polling out today, including an abc news/washington post poll that indicates more americans feeling negatively about the president and his job performance, especially about the economy. for the first time, numerically, more americans think that the president's policies have hurt the economy than have helped the economy. why -- i assume you think that they're wrong -- why are they wrong? >> well, look, i -- first and foremost, jake, obviously, as i've said in here a number of
times, there is and continues to be great frustration with where we are in this economy. among those frustrated is the president of the united states. we've seen a recession unlike virtually anything that anybody has seen in any of their lifetimes. and it's going to take, as the president will discuss on wednesday, more than a two-year or less than two-year time period to get out of that hole. that's why what he'll talk about he believes will continue us on a road to recovery, but that recovery will certainly take some time. and i think in the end this president and this administration will be graded on what happens at the end of this road, not some place in between. i think -- i'll be honest with you, i think the american people are not concerned about the president's poll numbers.
i think the american people are concerned about whether or not they have a job, how they're going to pay their bills, the future of their children. i think that's what the american people are concerned about, and that's the task that the president will spend every day worrying about. >> but a plurality think that what the president is doing is making matters worse. >> again, i think by virtually any measure, our economy is in a better place than it was two years ago. there are, i think, americans rightly concerned about our debt and our deficit, and the president understands that and has taken steps to introduce a budget that includes a freeze on non-security discretionary spending, and obviously will spend a decent amount of time in the next many months going through the medium and long term -- things that we need to do in the medium and long term to get our debt and deficit under control. yes, sir. >> robert, since you mentioned the jobs picture, i just wanted to ask one more question about peter orszag, because he said specifically that letting all the bush tax cuts expire will make the job situation worse. he said, "no one wants to make
an already stagnating jobs market worse over the next year or two, which is exactly what would happen if the cuts expire as planned." >> again, my reading of this is that -- >> you were talking about consumer spending before on jobs -- >> well, jake was talking about consumer spending and i was responding. again, i do not believe -- i think if you -- if you are looking at -- ed, if you're looking for a broad band of economists that will tell you the best way to get the economy moving is to extend those tax cuts, i don't think you'll find them. when the president -- when president bush signed the 2001
tax cuts into law -- i believe it was june of 2001 -- we were in the midst of a recession. including the month he signed those tax cuts into law, the economy shed jobs for 15 of the next 16 months. so i don't -- if your argument is that these jobs -- or these tax cuts spur a great amount of jobs or economic growth, i don't think you'll find an economist or series of economists -- certainly the cbo put together a list of all the things that might be done to get the economy moving again, and i think it was either 10 out of 10 or 12 out of 12. and certainly there's no historical data that would -- that you would point to. >> but you also have a lot of economists saying that if you raise taxes on the rich they're going to be less likely to hire people. doesn't that hurt the employment picture? >> again, 2 to 3 percent of small businesses would be affected in this. and most of those -- let's understand what those small businesses are. it's a white-collar law firm that meets the technical definition of not a large number of people that are employed, okay?
it's just -- we're not talking about the mom-and-pop hardware store. that's just not what we're talking about. >> related on the president's economic plan, last week from that podium you basically said there's not going to be a second stimulus plan. and then as the details start coming out and you add it up, the president is already proposing at least $350 billion in new money. >> the net cost of the expensing is not -- is 30 -- >> if you can get congress to agree to the offsets, which is a big "if." >> no, no, no, the net -- no, that's -- you've got the r&e -- research and experimentation tax credit funded by closing corporate loopholes. the expensing tax -- the increase in the expensing and the pulling forward of that in 2011 has a net cost over 10 years of $30 billion, because what you're doing is taking a schedule for investment and depreciation that would be written off as part of your taxes, instead of over a several-year period of time at half, you're pulling all of that investment forward to one year. but that money then isn't
written off in each of the successive years that the 10- year budget window is part of. so i think if you look at -- i think if you were to add up infrastructure, the r&e and this, it's certainly less than $200 billion. >> okay, you add it up, $200 billion, even if it's $200 billion, that's big money. >> well, it would be less -- $180 billion, $180 billion. >> okay, so $180 billion -- that's a lot of money. >> oh, i'm not saying it's not a lot of money. >> okay. so why are you not calling it a stimulus plan? i mean, can't the president be straight with the american people and say, look, the first one, we think it saved or created 3. 3 million jobs, but we need a second one? >> no, no, that's -- ed, i listed a series of things that the president had done over the course of the last -- let's see, what's today -- it's september. if you go back to last august,
not a month ago but a year and a month ago, we had cash for clunkers. we've extended unemployment insurance because -- for those that were -- for unemployed regardless of the number of weeks up to 99 you were going to lose your benefits. we've ensured that states aren't going to lay off teachers and firefighters when we need them most. the president has taken steps along the way, beyond the recovery act itself, to do things that were necessary to continue to spur our economic recovery, and that's exactly what's being done here. >> so it's not a stimulus? >> it's not. yes, sir. >> thank you, robert. you said a little while ago that we know what season we've entered in washington. i assume you meant the political season, when not much gets done on capitol hill. so why, then, did the president wait until now to introduce these tax cut proposals for businesses that republicans have been calling for for not just months but for years? >> well, then we ought to be able to get this done pretty quickly. >> no, because it's the season you just said, it just doesn't get done. >> but if you supported -- >> why would the president wait for exactly the point -- >> but if you supported -- >> -- when he knows things don't get to congress to introduce
this? >> chip, let me just take the premise of your question. if you support -- if you, as somebody who's running for congress, representing the other party -- >> robert, you know very well, you just said -- >> but hold on, i'm just trying to -- >> -- this is the season when things don't get done. >> just help me understand the logic here. so then would you concede that the logic of it not getting done is simply because of politics? >> yes. well, then you have to concede that the logic of the president introducing it now is because of politics. >> no, no -- well, first of all, i don't know that -- i don't know who -- maybe there are people that have proposed 100 percent expensing of -- i don't know that that's the case. >> mccain did it in 2008. >> in the campaign he did it. >> the r&e is -- >> a lot of this has been proposed by republicans in one form or another. >> well, i don't know if the expansion and the -- >> why would the president not have done it earlier this year or even last year? >> i'm sure that the permanence of r&e, we've been talking about that for years. i'm not sure that the expansion and the simplification of research and experimentation has been --
>> but this is all about politics and producing a law, isn't it? you can't possibly get it through congress and you know that. >> but, chip, congress doesn't stop thinking about what it's going to do after november. the president is putting on the table a series of what he believes are important economic ideas. >> why didn't he do it a year ago or six months ago? >> well, again, if you look at the expensing provisions -- in 2008, the former administration had a 50 percent expensing provision in law. the recovery act contained a 50 percent expensing provision in 2009. in 2010, the small business bill that is before the senate continues the 2009's 50 percent expensing threshold. we're saying that for 2011, we believe that 50 should go to 100. it builds off of an effort to get capital off the sidelines and into the economy. some of this stuff is -- builds off of what has already been done. so the notion that these are
somehow either pulled out of whole cloth for the first time i think is -- it's not an accurate reading of any of the policy -- >> speaking of mccain, he says that coming up with it now is just a sign that the administration is flailing around, looking for anything they can sell as an effort to get the economy moving. >> i think -- this is -- i guess in a sense, chip, i want to separate -- look, we're in the political season, we get that. this is -- these are not -- this is not simply something that the president is proposing to get us somehow through the next seven weeks of how we get our economy from where it is to where we want it to be. the president, as i said a
minute ago, is focused on the problems that the american people have -- the economic situation that we all find ourselves in. it may or may not overlap well with a political calendar. but that's -- again, that's not what -- the president isn't here to solve the nation's problems on a political calendar. he is here to solve the nation's problems as they exist. that's what he is elected to do and that's what he'll focus his time on doing. >> and just quickly on the koran story, have you heard the president comment on that? >> i have not. i have not. >> did the president misspeak yesterday when he said the infrastructure improvements would create jobs immediately? about the same time, officials were saying on background it would be 2011 and maybe late 2011. >> well, i think some of that obviously depends on when something would pass. if you pass something in -- if you pass something in the next few months, i think you could certainly see jobs created for the summer construction season, yes -- or i'm sorry, the spring construction season. yes, ma'am. >> you just told ed it's not a stimulus package. does that mean it won't stimulate the economy? >> i think there are a series of things that would help put our
economy on a stronger road to recovery. more importantly -- savannah, you could dump whatever you wanted into the economy to get the economy to do certain things in a very short period of time. none of that, though, is going to -- let's take the infrastructure, for instance. the infrastructure is built off of what congress will ultimately do as part of a six-year transportation reauthorization plan, partly because we know that one out of every five people that's unemployed used to spend time in the construction industry, back when we had fairly easy loans to buy a house, and back when millions of units of homes were being built annually. we now know that because of foreclosure, because of credit, because of the economy, there's a vast surplus in those homes. >> these measures are designed to stimulate the economy, correct? >> they are designed to continue our economic recovery.
>> you've announced pay-fors for some of these proposals, notably the ones that would be permanent, but not all of them. and i wonder how that runs up against your discretionary spending freeze, how it's consistent with your policy not to spend unless it's paid for. >> well, look, obviously on, i think, on the call that wendell was talking about, there was a discussion about closing tax cuts for oil and gas companies to pay for an increased amount of infrastructure spending, which would fall -- which would certainly fall in the non- security discretionary spending. >> just wondering how you decide, because some things you did identify pay-fors. others you don't -- >> again, i think some things are designed to -- some things are designed as part of, as you said, a bucket of otherwise discretionary spending, and some are designed to -- for tax
incentives that will take capital and money off the sidelines and put it into the economy. >> i guess, in other words, you're prepared to deficit-spend right now, notwithstanding this spending freeze. >> well, there are certainly proposals in here that would do that, yes. >> okay, and a quick one. on our poll, 58 percent believe that if the republicans get control they will have different ideas than the bush administration, 35 percent believe they'll fall back on bush policies. it stands out because it seems like voters are directly rejecting the very argument that the president has been making forcefully for some months -- >> they seem to be rejecting the very argument that the republicans' head -- both of the congressional committees made on nbc as well. i think pete sessions said very verbatim that "we want to return to those policies." >> that may be the case, but it seems voters don't know that.
>> we will spend the next couple of months sharpening that argument, if need be, to ensure that people do. laura. >> in the peter orszag piece, he also, besides making an economic argument, made a political argument about extending the tax cuts for the upper-income bracket by saying that that may be the cost of a deal with republicans. and he says that would be a tradeoff worth making. do you think that would be a tradeoff worth making? >> the president's viewpoint is that we cannot afford to extend the tax cuts for those making more than $250,000 a year. let's understand what that means. for most of these -- most of the spending for extending those tax cuts comes from -- almost
all of it, the bulk of it comes from incomes that surpass a million dollars. it's roughly, for a millionaire, that's a $100,000 tax cut. i don't think the president believes that we are a $100,000 tax cut from a millionaire away from an economy that works for families that are making $40,000 a year. >> so is he ruling out signing legislation that would extend the tax cuts for that group? >> again, our viewpoint on this is that we should and must pass legislation that extends the tax cuts for middle-class families. but we cannot afford in this environment to -- in our budgetary and fiscal environment -- to extend the tax cuts for those that make more than $250,000 a year. >> so, therefore, you're ruling out -- are you ruling out that legislation? >> i'm simply stating what our position is. >> why are you so dead set against using the term "stimulus," especially for the public works component of this series of proposals?
it very much resembles things that were in the recovery act. >> some of them build off of what was in the recovery act. i do not think -- as i said last week, i do not think that this is anywhere near the level of what was enacted at the beginning of the administration. >> and also, robert, you said a few minutes ago that the president wants to put on the table this series of economic ideas. how do you see the prospects for it getting off the table anytime soon? >> well, look, i think if you go back and look at, and as has been pointed out here, these seem to -- some of these ideas have some support. look, at some point we're going to have to stop playing politics and start getting about fixing the economy because that's what's right for the american people. at some point, the other party will begin to do that. and we have a series of proposals for them to look at. >> you talk about peter's -- putting on a congressional relations hat. in terms of white house
relations, did he give you guys a heads up at all that he was going to be writing on this subject? >> we certainly didn't see peter's column before it appeared today. i mean, obviously i think it was reported late last week that he was going to start writing a column, but -- >> right, but the substance, the grist of -- yes -- >> nobody that i'm aware of saw the column before. >> and just -- sorry to belabor this point, but you just said the president is very -- deeply, deeply troubled. >> yes, exactly. i can see the pain -- the smirk on your faces is -- seems to underscore the tremendous emotional pain with which i'm now putting you through, huh? >> i'm glad we're having this moment. >> i'm glad we could do this together. >> do you want us to leave? >> extending -- extending -- you were just were very clear, the president does not believe extending -- it's not affordable to extend tax cuts for -- but i believe orszag's point was it's not affordable to extend them for the middle class. that's his point. and if we can get your comments on that. >> the president disagrees with that. >> can you talk about -- >> see -- you didn't seem very pained at all. that was -- >> the president disagrees with his former omb director that extending the middle-class tax
cuts are not something that we can afford? >> yes. >> were these arguments he made when he was budget director? >> i will say this. i obviously was not in every meeting that peter was in. i did not -- i did not hear him make this argument. he may have made this argument in some meetings. i certainly don't recall it. but that's not to say that he didn't. ari. >> can you talk about what the president discussed this morning with secretary clinton and the nato secretary general? >> i think -- if i'm not mistaken, the clinton meeting is part of their regular weekly meetings. i don't have a readout on that, but we will have a readout on the nato secretary general a little bit later on. my guess is that most of that had to do with afghanistan. >> and also, to what extent is tomorrow's speech a direct response to congressman boehner's speech on the economy in ohio a couple of weeks ago? >> well, it's certainly -- it's in the same city and i think the president will use that opportunity to contrast a vision of returning to a decade of policy and value decisions that got us into this mess, which if you look back at what
congressman boehner said in that speech, he seemed to lay out a strong predicate for the very same type of decisions that had been made over the past 10 years that got us into this mess. i anticipate the president will spend a decent amount of time discussing it. >> and the venue, a community college versus the city club? >> that i -- look, i think it's in this case cleveland and cleveland. >> did you choose cleveland because boehner had given his speech there? >> yes. i didn't want to put you through the same emotional racking that i just put hans through. so i just figured "yes" was probably an easier answer. yes, sir. >> robert, can i ask you about the oval office rug and the quotation that you folks attributed to martin luther
king? >> i don't think -- well, just to be fair, i don't -- i think -- >> he said it. >> i was going to say. let's -- well, i think we should stipulate for history that it was not us that thought he said it. it was many people that believed, i think rightly so, that he said that. >> he did say it on more than one occasion. >> yes. >> it's been pointed out that dr. king himself often pointed to the fact that these were the words of dr. theodore parker, an abolitionist. is parker -- was the president aware of these antecedents? >> i have not -- mark, i have -- we have not covered the rug today in our discussions. i would say this. i read some of the back-and- forth on this. i read the column in the post, which we certainly all learn a lot of important history on. again, i'd point out that i think what king said and what parker said are not the same
thing. what's on the rug is what dr. king had said. >> does the president or does the white house not believe that parker should get some credit for -- >> well, nobody gets credit on the rug. i mean, there's -- i mean, it's just the quotes. i don't -- and mark, i have to say, if i see you in there writing on the rug, you're going to be in a lot of trouble. i'm just -- i want to get that sort of out before -- >> the names aren't -- i haven't seen the rug, but the names aren't on -- >> no, i think it's just around the edges. yes, ma'am. >> robert, today charlie cook joins other analysts in forecasting that estimated the republicans could gain over 40 seats and very possibly substantially more. do you see that's -- >> that certainly hedges your bets. >> well, 40, do you think that's -- >> forty or more. >> do you see a political landscape right now where the republicans -- >> look, i'm not going to take business away from charlie or stu or others by making a lot of predictions. >> do you think -- you don't think that isn't going to happen?
>> i think i said a few weeks ago that i thought democrats would retain the house and the senate. i still believe that. >> oh, yesterday, when the president ad-libbed that his critics talk about him like a dog, what was he -- what did he mean? >> i have not talked to him about that, but i assume that if you look at some of what is said about the president and matched them up against the facts, on occasion dogs get a better representation. >> who was the "they" that he was referring to? >> i think there's probably -- we could probably find you several hundred thousand quotes. >> robert, i was looking forward to the u.n. general assembly meeting in a couple of weeks, and i was refreshing my memory on what the president said last year. one of the things he said to the assembly is that he was -- one of his goals was to reduce the skepticism and distrust of the u.s. abroad.
have you -- what do you think? have you talked about this with him lately? does he think that that is -- >> i have not. i can certainly see if some of the national security folks have. look, i think that -- i think the -- if you look at where the views of those across the world have of this country now, and how they thought of it when the president came into office, i think we have seen an improvement in world opinion. but i think what's important is that the removal of skepticism and distrust in world opinion is not a means or an ends to itself, it's -- i'm sorry, it's not an end, it's a means. and that is we -- it helps our ability to bring along those on
a world stage to do things that are important to increase the security of people throughout the world. i think if you -- look, this certainly -- this action predates what the president said last september, but starting with north korean sanctions, extending to sanctions on iran. i think there are a whole host of things -- an additional start treaty pending before the senate to cut the threat of nuclear weapons in this age -- all are a result of better relationships that we have with other countries. >> and can you -- looking forward to the meeting coming up, is there any particular focus that you can highlight, or something the president is asking for? >> you know, i have not spent a lot of time on what the program looks like yet, but as we get closer, we'll get a chance to. glenn. >> robert, the president was not born with a silver spoon in his mouth. he had a lot of economic
struggle when he was a kid. why doesn't he talk about that more when he's out? >> well, i think he talked a little bit about it yesterday and i think he'll talk about it a little bit more on wednesday. it obviously was part of what he's talked about for many years. i have not looked back at all his speeches about whether or not that's been a lot of what he talked about or how much that has changed. i think a lot of his speeches have tended to walk people through their -- likely what they're experiencing in their lives, vice what has happened in his. >> but that's an interesting distinction because presidents who have been pretty successful at making these arguments before -- looking at president clinton, even president -- second president bush, to some degree, have certainly talked about their personal experience. it's been a way of sort of making those points. do you think he needs to do a good deal more of that? >> well, look, as i said, i think you'll hear some of that
tomorrow. i think you heard some of it yesterday. i think it's a good part of what -- the type of decisions and the type of values that lead to the decisions that he makes as part of our economic recovery. so i do anticipate you'll hear more of it. april. >> robert, following up on jake -- on his question about orszag, was peter orszag someone here who was known as a dissenting voice, somewhat -- to push back on proposals periodically? or was he someone who just pretty much followed through on giving the president ideas or implementing things that the president wanted? what was he, or was he a mixture of both? >> april, i wouldn't want to generalize about anybody here. i mean, look, i think probably like a number of people that work here -- and if you walked into any meeting, people have
opinions that may or may not vary with those that are in the room. this is a longer way of saying i think it would be hard to put just anybody in a box, for two years of service, in one neat box so quickly. >> so would you at least say that he did maybe push back on some economic issues, maybe give other ideas a twist or turns? because, i mean, he made a persuasive argument in this story that he wrote about a nation, two deficits and how to come out of that. so, i mean, you were saying about congress -- he was trying to make the point about congress, but he made a persuasive argument bringing facts to what he said. so did he bring something to the table -- people talking about that morning, that he
brought that to the table, to the president -- >> maybe i'm just not sort of hearing your question. look, i think peter has, again, depending on the issue, depending on -- has had varying opinions on what to do when and how best to execute it. and i think that's true for a whole host of different policies. >> all right, and also on the issue of cleveland. there are some in cleveland, in actually the city proper of cleveland, who are concerned, saying that cleveland is a prime example of a city who can benefit from any kind of stimulus package. and the president continues to go on the outskirts of cleveland. they're saying that the city has a 20 percent unemployment rate, 17,000 vacant homes. and wednesday, the president goes to a place called parma on the outskirts. and before he's gone to -- if i'm getting it right, stoneysville or something like that before, on the outskirts of cleveland. and why not go into cleveland proper? >> you know, april, i don't know that the -- look, i just
don't -- i don't think that -- what you talk about in parma doesn't also mean -- look -- i'm trying to figure out the best way to say this. look, i think if -- what the president is talking about is companies that are in cleveland proper or around cleveland, these tax cuts would help them -- infrastructure spending, building new roads and bridges and runways is going to help -- it's going to help everybody. this isn't a suburban economic speech or an urban economic speech, because i just don't think that the president and the team have -- i don't think they've dissected this quite down to that level in terms of the types of things that we need and the types of problems that we face.
>> robert, just two questions. two washington post editorials were headlined, "the scourge of rape in prisons" and "a tolerance of rape," and they ask why has the justice department dithered for a year? and could you tell us, because the president does care about this, doesn't he? >> i didn't necessarily read what you're referring to, lester. >> the two editorials in the washington post and i have them right here. >> well, you should -- if they reference the department of justice, i think that's probably a pretty good place to start. >> and then, you don't believe
that any of us would talk about you like a dog, do you? >> can i get back to you on that, lester? and i'm simply -- i'm going through those same sort of tortured soul that i can only imagine hans was going through in asking his questions. stephen. >> bp is going to release its report tomorrow into the causes of the oil spill. has the white house had an advance look at this? and secondly, given the past relationship between the administration and the company, what level of confidence do you have that this is going to produce a genuine finding into what caused the accident? >> well, look, i'll say this. i know of no one that has seen it here. i've certainly seen emails alluding to the notion that -- and clips alluding to the notion that this is -- this will be released. obviously i think we'd want a chance to look at the report. i think an important partner of
that investigation, stephen, ultimately is going to get -- is going to be a look at the blowout preventer itself, which only recently, in the last few days, has been brought to the surface, and will give us a chance to see whether was this a design flaw, was this something that was just a problem that this blowout preventer had to deal with, and a whole host of things. so we'll certainly look through the report. obviously -- look through the report and may have some comment about it. but i do not know of anybody who has seen an advance copy. yes, sir. >> thank you, robert. about secretary general rasmussen's visit, is the president worried with nato and actually diminishing role in afghanistan, this becoming a heavier burden on u.s. soldiers on the ground there? and secondly, has general petraeus expressed or requested more nato involvement in afghanistan? >> i don't know about the second part. look, as part of what the president announced last december at west point, nato contributed an increase in forces on the ground in afghanistan, a contribution that
i know commanders at the time at isaf believed would play a crucial role in our overall strategy. obviously this is not -- the problems that we face with -- in afghanistan and in pakistan dealing with al qaeda and its extremist allies, their potential return, an environment that allows, if they were to return, unfettered planning for an additional terrorist attack -- that's not something that's simply in the interest of the united states in preventing.
it's of international concern. and that's why there is an international security assistance force there. and we're certainly -- i know that the commanders -- our commanders are thankful for that involvement. >> but does the president feel that the nato leaders are not conscious enough of the general danger for themselves of a -- >> how so? >> -- of a terrorist -- >> well, no, look, i think if you look at -- if you -- look, i certainly wouldn't say that. i think if you look at what has happened over the past couple years in places -- past few years, not just a couple, but past few years in places like england and spain, i don't think that -- i don't think you could make a very eloquent point that there aren't those in the nato alliance that haven't also experienced the type of terrorism -- certainly, maybe not quite on the scale of 9/11, but certainly they've hardly been immune to it. sam.
>> robert, yes, there's been growing alarm in the judicial community about the vacancies at some of these federal courts. forty-seven vacancies have been labeled "emergencies" by the judiciary because of heavy caseloads. you've talked a lot from the lectern about gop obstructionism on this front, but what is the white house going to do differently, either with the remaining time in the recess, perhaps, or afterwards to actually get people appointed -- >> well, sam, i don't have the statistics in front of me. i think obviously we have sent up a comparable number of judicial appointments up to the senate. as you mentioned and as i have mentioned on many occasions, we have seen a lack of any sort of cooperation in moving a number of these nominees along. and look, every president and congress of differing parties is going to have some fights
about this, but there are -- there continue to be an absurd number of judges that have passed -- and again, i don't have the stats in front of me, but we'll get them -- that have passed unanimously out of committee that need to be considered quickly by congress. it just doesn't make a lot of sense if there's -- that we can't move a judicial nominee through the process if they have received a unanimous endorsement from the committee that is most tasked with looking at these judicial appointments. >> we just had this recess, though, and there hasn't been a recess appointment, as far as i'm concerned -- or as far as i know, of any of these nominees. i'm wondering if we should expect something in the week ahead, or why haven't you taken advantage of the recess appointment? >> look, i don't have any -- i can't look into my crystal ball to tell you what's ahead. >> robert, can i ask a question on economic strategy? >> go ahead. >> someone is -- a brookings
institution senior fellow william gale about a month ago said that whether you can afford it or not, the only politically feasible thing to do is to have at least a one- or two-year extension of 2001 and 2003 tax cuts. now, can you afford not to do that if you hope to address long-term business uncertainty -- which i believe is what you're trying to do with your -- >> well, some things are designed to address, as i said earlier, money that may be on the sidelines that isn't being used for investment, for research, or for expansion. but, look, again, i don't think that anybody at the brookings
institute would tell you, from an economic standpoint, that the best way to address business uncertainty is by extending a tax cut for somebody that makes a million dollars a year. >> he didn't say that. he said if you want to get anything through, politically feasibly, the only way politically feasibly getting anything through would be to do it in order to get what you want to get through, which is business uncertainty and addressing -- >> well, again, maybe i agree some with what -- i said i thought that's what -- the argument that peter was actually trying to make in the newspaper today was, again, a political and a congressional relations argument, not an economic argument. >> i'm sorry, but at his swan song, orszag did say you can't afford a 10-year extension of all the 2001, 2003 tax cuts, because that would cost $700 billion. >> that $700 billion is a 10- year extension of the upper-end tax cuts, not the 2001, 2003 middle-class tax cuts. thank you guys.
>> this morning, i visited with dr. and peters, a provider you will hear from late to prevent dr. peters is a local physician who had her identities stolen by a team of criminals operating a massive fraud scheme. she wishes doing what she loved to do, and treating a patient and care to those in need.
a group of dcam artists still her name and provider #and began to medicare for the duke and provider #and began to bill medicare for services she never saw. there were new tools to track the money. by the time we shut it down, we found that they had already laundered as much as $4.7 million under 19 different provider names. nearly all of the money today has been recovered. when we caught the perpetrators, we did not as fine a boxes of fraud and records. we found a stockpile of dangerous weapons and assault rifles, machine guns, and brass knuckles parana -- brass knuckles. >> the help -- there is